Is justice served by unmasking a restaurant critic?

Restaurant critics don’t like to announce themselves to the people and places they review. So they become the secret agents of journalism: They make reservations under assumed names, pay with others’ credit cards and occasionally even wear disguises when dining in an establishment where the owners or staff might know them.

And they especially don’t like having photos of themselves spread around.

Los Angeles Times restaurant critic S. Irene Virbila had her cover blown in spectacular fashion last week when a photograph of her began circulating on the Internet – posted by a restaurateur who offered his own review of Virbila’s reviews, calling them “unnecessarily cruel and irrational.”

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